Would a person need to licence the copyright in order to make and distribute a Monopoly video game?
Monopoly is a trademark of Parker Brothers. You would need to get permission to use that trademark.
The artwork of the game is copyrighted and cannot be duplicated without violating that copyright.
In general, the labels meaning phrases like "Go to Jail" and "New York Avenue" are probably copyrighted and some court decisions have decided that labels are a copyrightable element. However, there is some gray area.
The game mechanics are not copyrightable and can be duplicated.
What this means is that if you clone the game and use new labels (like new property names and card titles) then you are probably fine. You would have to make a novel board design.
If you clone the game, but use the game's labels, then you could potentially lose in court.
Of course, remember that corporations will sometimes sue just to intimidate people, even if they have a losing case. Just because your clone is non-infringing doesn't mean they won't sue you.
It costs them money to sue people, so if your clone is obscure or not used by many people it could fly under the radar and be ignored by the company. If your clone was a success and became widely used, that would significantly increase the chance you could get sued.
In most cases a company will threaten infringers before they sue them, because it is a lot cheaper to threaten somebody than sue them. Therefore, you could make your clone and just plan on discontinuing it if they threaten you. Of course, there is a small risk they would sue you anyway. If you made no money then you are probably safe because it would be a lot harder for them to argue that you commercially damaged them if you made no money.
The name "MONOPOLY" is a registered trademark for the board game and has been registered in the USA since 1935. It is owned by Hasbro Inc., of Rhode Island. The brand applies to a "real estate trading game", the distinctive pieces of the game, the "money" used, not to mention computer games, among other things. USPTO: TSDR Monopoly brand computer game
"MONOPOLY�, the distinctive design of the gameboard, the four corner squares, the Mr. Monopoly name and character, and each of the distinctive elements of the board, are trademarks of Hasbro, Inc. for its property trading game and game equipment. � 1999 Hasbro, Inc. All Rights Reserved."